Thursday, June 19, 2008

Shortcut The Connection

So if you are a regular reader of my BLOG you know that I often post different Ripple Connection Questions that we use throughout my public and private 8 Minute Ripple events. These connection questions are designed to help people engage and connect quicker and with a more positive result than what one might expect. I personally believe the questions, when used appropriately, help shortcut the connection and relationship building process and open up a world of current and future dialogue jumping off points.

Let's face it in today's society we aren't very good at communicating. Sure we meet people, we talk to them, we exchange pleasantries but at the end of the day how much do we really learn or know about them? For most people, especially in at a networking or social event, the depth of knowledge that they learn from the people they meet rarely goes beyond what the other person does for a living or who they work for. I call that surface information and surface information nets very little relevant or substantive insight. Plus let's face's often boring and uninteresting information when you come right down to it.

So why do it?

Well, for most people it's the only way we know. It's our default strategy to ask someone what they do or where they work just to have something, anything to say. We push and we prod about surface subjects and wonder why we aren't making the kinds of connections we really want or need in our lives or careers.

People cross you path in life for a reason. It's up to you to figure out why. Ripple Connection Questions or heck, just any insightful question, that helps you cut through the surface layer of someone to learn something, anything meaningful has to be better. Doesn't it? Don't answer that question because you already deep down inside know the answer.

There is an old saying that people do business with people they know, like and trust. Well whether you are pushing a sales quota, building a business or looking for your next job, that saying has meaning for us all. The kinds of connections we make are dependent on our ability to make them the most that they can and are intended to be. I would submit that in order to do that, you have to gain some better insight into the people you are meeting and make your interactions relevant.

Very little or dare I say relevance comes from surface connections. So quit making them.

Dig deeper.

Ask better, more insightful questions.

Don't let opportunities pass you by.

Don't make that one interaction your only interaction. Call them following an event - ask them to lunch or out for coffee. Do something to keep the momentum going and keep exploring, learning and connecting.

Enjoy the process of connecting and people will enjoy connecting with you.

Ripple On!!!

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